Daily Archives: January 3, 2013

“LEFT BANK” (LOUNGE.BAR.DINING.) in Shatti Al Qurum

leftbank directional sign

Hard to believe that my wife and I only recently went to Left Bank for the first time even though we’ve been in Oman for years and Left Bank has been opened for just as many.  After hearing several good reports from friends about their good food and specials, we decided to go there for dinner a little over a week ago.  Left Bank is located on the same hill as Mumtaz Mahal, just behind the Children’s Museum in Shatti al Qurum.front of leftbank

outdoor seating

With this time of the year being the perfect weather for sitting outside, we sat outdoors overlooking the mangrove swamp facing the Crown Plaza and “love road“.  It was quiet when we arrived at 7pm (you really should get a reservation as it can be busy here!) but picked up by 8.looking inside

Panorama 2

Left Bank looks pretty cool inside and would be a better option when dining from April to September.  If you don’t like the smell of smoke, it’s highly recommended to sit inside as a lot of people enjoy smoking outdoors on the patio.  We sat outside even though we were surrounded by smokers at other tables, but weren’t really bothered at all.drinks

Plenty of mocktails at Left Bank which they list on the menu as “Chauffeur Drinks“. 🙂 Ours were great.  I had the Apple Mule (2.5 OR) and my wife had the Jumong (2.5 OR).  Of course Left Bank is a licensed bar/restaurant, so there are plenty of alcoholic drinks on the menu to choose from.light bites

We didn’t order anything from the “Light Bites” section of the menu, but I’ve added it here in case any of you folks considers going to Left Bank for lunch between noon and 3pm from Saturday to Thursday.duck spring rolls

It’s seems like we order vegetable spring rolls wherever we go as one of our appetizers so for something new we chose Duck Spring Rolls from the “Small Bites” section. It would normally be 4.4 OR but we ordered 3 items off the list for 7.5 rials.  I really like these money saving schemes available on Left Bank’s menu! 🙂small bites

I was told that a lot of guests go with 2-4 items from the Small Bites and don’t even make it to the mains, especially if they’re having a few drinks.camembert

We were very glad that one of the helpful Filipino waitresses (in her great wisdom) suggested the Whole-Baked Camembert.  My wife hesitated at first because it’s a lot of cheese, but we both agreed that this appetizer was incredible. Take note that when ordering this from “Small Bites“, this appetizer counts as 2 items.Sunday Roast and Mains

The Sunday Roast sounds like a great deal and we’ll be trying that out in the very near future.fish and chips

I’m a real sucker for beer-battered fish and chips, so the Left Bank Fish & Chips in Tiger Beer Batter (7.4 OR) was an easy choice for me! I’m not sure if you get an idea of the size from this photo, but this was a huge serving and was so delicious! The fries were great as well.  One of my favorite orders of fish and chips so far in the Sultanate, and I’ve had quite a few!lamb shank

As recommended by the head chef/manager, my wife ordered the Lamb Shank.  I’m so glad my wife “insisted” that I try some of this as the lamb was perfection. And once again, this was a good sized portion.  The carmelized sharlot sauce went extremely well with the lamb.  It is easy to see now why the chef recommended this dish to truly try the best of Left Bank.grills sides and desserts

There are plenty of options on the Left Bank menu for future visits here and we will definitely be back.sticky toffee pudding

Sticky Toffee Pudding (3.2 OR) wouldn’t have been my first option from the dessert list, and I’m glad the chef recommended it as this was the perfect way to end an incredible meal.  It went so well with my Cafe Latte.view from hill

The view from the Left Bank parking lot, with the Sultan Qaboos Street on the left, ROHM straight ahead and the Children’s Museum (igloo-like structures) on the right.

We definitely had a great experience on our first evening at Left Bank with great food and fantastic service.  I may be a little more than biased here, but I think that the exceptional service comes from the fact that all the waiters and waitresses are Filipino! 🙂

Have any of you been to Left Bank? Regular customers perhaps?  Are you as impressed with the place as we are?  I think it’s with good reason that they’ve moved Left Bank into the “fine dining” category of Entertainer Oman 2013.  Check Left Bank out on facebook here. Here is a pretty good deal for ladies on Saturday evenings (from the Left Bank facebook page), called “Hush”:hush at left bank

Left Bank Business Hours: Sat-Thurs – 12-3pm & 6pm-2am Fridays – 2pm-1.30/2.00am.  As I mentioned before, if you do go, make sure to call ahead and make a reservation. Tel: +968-2469-3699

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Just One More Day Before I Win 1,000,000 OR from bank muscat! :-)

jackpot article in oman tribune(from Oman Tribune, January 2nd, 1013. Here’s almost the identical article in the Oman Observer.)

There are no lotteries, scratch tickets, casinos or other forms of “official gambling” here in the Sultanate as it’s considered “haram” (“forbidden” in Arabic) in Islam, but there are ways around this…Shopping malls and banks often have “festivals” where people can win cars or huge cash prizes for shopping or service.  Tomorrow bank muscat will announce the biggest jackpot prize to date (I believe) with 1,000,000 Omani rials (or about $2.6 million US).al Mazyona ad in paper

Would you believe that I’m eligible for winning that prize? (Hope springs eternal!) You just need to maintain a minimum average balance of 1,000 rials. There is another bonus in that your chances of winning are multiplied by the number of years you’ve had an account with bank muscat.  For example, because I’ve had an account with bank muscat for 5 years, my chances of winning are X5 of someone who just started an account this year.  National Bank of Oman has a similar savings grand draw on January 10th!al Kanz saving scheme

So, are any of you readers in Oman eligible for the bank muscat or National Bank of Oman grand prizes? What would you do with one million rials?!

One more thought to add to give us a proper perspective: The truth is that any of us with a bank account, a job that provides income for our family and a roof over our heads  has already won “a lottery of sorts” in that there are SO many less fortunate people out there that would long to have such great living conditions!

Whatever we receive in the way of providence, has God’s blessing in it, and will do us good. Cares, troubles, and difficulties come with all property not
acquired in this way; but God’s blessing gives simple enjoyment, and levies no
tax upon the comfort.” (from Clarke’s Commentary on the Bible for Proverbs 10:22)